Taking the manual out of data collection

Automated bar coding the secret ingredient for inventory accuracy and production tracking.

By ·

Manual data collection can bog down inventory management or production processes, and can introduce inaccuracies and inefficiencies throughout a company’s operations. Red Gold, one of the nation’s largest full-line tomato product manufacturers, has raised its inventory accuracy to 99% and improved production tracking by replacing its manual system with a bar code-based data collection solution.

The Indiana-based company was using a wholly manual, paper-based process to track inventory and finished goods production. As cans of tomato products were loaded into cases and palletized, machine operators, lift truck operators and palletizer operators would have to write down multiple pieces of information to record production.

Manufacturing and shipping operators also had to record a variable-length case code that was stenciled onto each shipping tray or case. These codes, eight to 14-characters long, including both alphabetic and numeric characters, were unstructured and not always printed in the same place on the trays or cases. Red Gold’s primary distribution center may have 50,000 to 60,000 pallets in storage on any given day, and between 100 to 200 trucks moving through the facility each day.

The new system was deployed in phases between 2002 and 2007 at three facilities. While most orders are for full pallets of product, the new system allows operators to build mixed pallets within the system and generate new pallet labels that reflect these case moves.

Staff members appreciate the new system, which has cut labor costs at multiple points throughout the process. By standardizing company case codes and automatically tracking each case electronically, the system has also improved compliance with customer and government traceability requirements.

Integrated Barcoding Systems
517-266-7771
http://www.intbarcode.com

More Technology Coverage

More from Modern’s 2012 Casebook


About the Author

Josh Bond, Senior Editor
Josh Bond is Senior Editor for Modern, and was formerly Modern’s lift truck columnist and associate editor. He has a degree in Journalism from Keene State College and has studied business management at Franklin Pierce University.

Subscribe to Modern Materials Handling Magazine!

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Find out what the world’s most innovative companies are doing to improve productivity in their plants and distribution centers.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Latest Whitepaper
Sorting Out Your Sortation Options
Guiding you through the process of evaluating and selecting the right “mission-critical” sortation solution
Download Today!
From the April 2017 Issue
How does a fastgrowing, e-commerce startup company build out order fulfillment capabilities? Thrive Market answered that question with its new facility in Indiana.
2017 Warehouse/DC Equipment Survey: Investment up as service pressures rise
Putaway 101: Everything in its Place
View More From this Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!
Latest Webcast
2016 Warehouse/DC Operations Webcast: Confronting omni-channel complexity
During this webcast we’ll examine the current activities, trends, and best practices in warehouse and DC operations management and how companies plan to address complex issues associate with omni-channel fulfillment.
Register Today!
EDITORS' PICKS
ProMat closes: Make your plans for Modex 2018
With a record number of exhibitors and attendees seen at ProMat 2017, MHI anticipates more of the...
Keynote: Magic is the result of over-preparation and over-delivering to customers
During his keynote presentation Wednesday afternoon, Earvin “Magic” Johnson told a packed...

Keynote panel confirms digital supply chain shift seen in new MHI study
Wednesday’s keynote panelists agreed it is time to embrace the shift to digital supply chains seen...
MHI to honor original products, solutions with 5th-annual Innovation Awards
On Wednesday, during MHI Industry Night with Dana Carvey, the winners of the 5th-annual MHI...